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Old 05-20-2011, 07:59 PM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 234

Attila and The Chipmunk take on the World

Hello everyone! We're back from Walt Disney World!

To those of you who read my pre-trip report: welcome back If there are any new faces out there, hi! Nice to meet you.

As far as introductions go, I’ll link the PTR Here as I’ve covered the who and why pretty thoroughly there.

Did you read it?...

...Are you sure?...


…Really Truly?...

Ok, now that’s out of the way, we can get to the really fun part—the part where we talk about Walt Disney World!

P.S. Day 1 doesn’t have too many pictures, but I have thousands of pictures to put in on the later days, I promise!

Day 1:

The began at exactly six am… well, I guess the day technically began at midnight, but for me it began at six. Why so early? Well, my dear brother was not only enjoying an unscheduled visit home thanks to a tornado, he was also headed to the Middle East for a May term class the same morning as we were going to WDW. Yeah. My mom was excited too.

To add to the bedlam, Mom hurt her shoulder the week before and needed physical therapy, not to mention I had a final to take. So, in case you’re keeping track, this morning we had to

a) Get David to the Middle East
b) Get Mom to her PT appointment
c) Get me to my British Lit final
d) And then Get Mom and I to WDW.

** vey. Anyway, back to the action—I leapt out of bed… and fell flat on my face on the floor. There’s a reason my parents didn’t name me Grace. After last minute packing, running, and general hullaballoo, we all made it into the car and headed to the first item on our list. Mom’s PT appointment.

She dropped David and I at Friendly’s for breakfast next door to the PT’s and then went off to her appointment. After scarfing down some pancakes, David realized he’d forgotten a crucial piece of equipment: his sunglasses. He’s headed to the Middle East and he forgot his sunglasses. His solution: we run across the street to Kmart and grab a pair. No big deal, right? Right. The little “street” happens to have four lanes and is rather busy... but what else could we do? We ran across the street like crazy people (good news: we didn't die! Yay!) and ended up in front of Kmart... which was closed. Before I could kill him, he pointed out the fact that it opened in 10 minutes. So for the next ten minutes we stared at and were stared at by the… odd… folks who were waiting outside of Kmart at 7:30 in the morning. But the nice man let us in 5 minutes early (with the stipulation that we couldn't check out until they opened for real). We headed straight to the sunglasses and picked out a pair he liked. (a pair of mirrored aviators if you're wondering)

After running back across the road, we met my mom at the PT’s office, and we were off to the airport to drop the boy off. We arrived at the airport with just enough time for him to get through security and hop on the first of three flights he would take that day. The next stop was the most crucial we took all day. Without this stop, the day would have crashed and burned rapidly. What was this all-so-important pitstop? A caffeine run at Starbucks, of course.

After the icy goodness was pumping through our veins, we made a beeline for my tutorial (for those of you who are not homeschoolers, I’ll translate—a tutorial is when a bunch of homeschoolers get together once a week to take upper level classes which our parents might not want to or be able to teach and we hire a tutor to teach the classes) for my British Lit final. I’d been sweating over this one because I’d been more inclined to study WDW than Auden that last week. However, I’m proud to say: I Aced it! Yay!

After British Lit, I headed to my Composition class. My mom popped in after only about a half hour and sprung me—which means I WAS FREE! I was an official high school graduate. With that out of the way, it was time to celebrate.

My Nana drove us both to the airport (with her black lab snuggling me the whole trip). By now, it was about 1:30, and our plane left at 2:30. We started through security and GASP! I got flagged. The guy went through my purse three times and almost confiscated my saltshaker (I need to eat a lot of salt for a medical condition, so I always carry a salt shaker in my purse) but when I explained my condition (using the biggest words I could to make it sound like a really bad disease) he decided it was ok. Whew! We grabbed some Chinese food at the gate (not noteworthy, but ok) and waited for the flight.

After we finished our lunch,the time had come to board the plane!

When I sat down, I went to put my ID away—and to my shock it wasn’t there! I immediately panicked. I checked again, and it still wasn't there. So I panicked again. I checked a third time and, to paraphrase Douglass Adams, "it stubbornly persisted in its absence." So can you guess what I did then? I panicked a little more and spat out a stream of nonsense at my poor Mom explaining the situation.She suggested I ask the flight attendant if I could go get it. I did, and the lady said that I’d have to be escorted on and off the plane. I was pretty embarrassed and upset at this point, but then an angel who happened to double as an airline pilot stepped in. His name was Mark and, noticing my distress, he offered me his arm and said he would be happy to help me find it. So we waltzed off the plane with him cracking jokes all the way down the corridor to the gate. When we arrived, the man at the desk greeted me by name and said he had something for me—a little pink card with my photo on it. *sigh* my ID. I missed you, little buddy.

Crisis averted, we made it back to the plane… where we sat. For a while. Make that a good long while. It seems that the number of people they had on the plane didn’t match the number of people they thought they should have had on the plane. So they counted us. Three times. Then, some one somewhere figured something out and we finally got off the ground.

After a fairly noneventful flight we touched down in Orlando, where Mom immediately set to worrying about the luggage. I had full faith in magic and pixie dust. She, however, wanted more tangible proof that her luggage would arrive in the room. So she asked the nearest man in Mickey Mouse gloves whether or not we had to get our luggage from the carousel and if it would actually arrive in our room. He laughed and said that if the tags were on it, they’d get it. He then reassured her that they do this all day, every day and that he promised they’d get there on time.

Thus assured, we walked into the (wrong) line for the ME. After we transferred to the right line, the bus appeared almost instantly. Our bus driver was not the Magical sort, and he never warned us the WDW sign was coming, so I missed it completely.

After a stop at the AKL, we made it to Pop Century. I walked around the lobby inhaling deeply. (I read in a TR that Pop has its own unique smell—and they were right, it does!) and got in line to pick up our packet. It was then I found out that they had put us in the 1970s. I pouted a little because we thought that all the “preferred” rooms were in the 1960s (my preferred decade) and the woman offered to see what she could do, but at this point, we just wanted to crash. Anywhere would do. To our surprise—it was perfect! It was on the ground floor, far enough away from the pool as to be quiet, but 30 seconds away from Classics Hall and the Bus Stop.

Once we freshened up and unpacked, we caught our first Disney Bus of the week to DTD for dinner and shopping. Our ADR for the evening was at Raglan Road. I, for one, was a bit worried about this one because Mom isn’t huge on European food. I love it; give me my bangers, mash, flapjacks and flakes any day, but she’s not really into it. We arrived and browsed around the gift shop until our buzzer buzzed. A lovely server whisked us away to our table and left us with the menu and far too many choices. But to tide us over as we fretted over the menu, on which every item looked equally appealing, she dropped off a basket of brown bread and a plate of simple syrup made with Guinness instead of water. This is my new favorite thing in the world.

Looking over the menu again, I ended up with steak (served on a bed of mash, glazed with a whisky marmalade, and topped with two steakhouse onion rings and garnished with a sprig of watercress)

and mom had a sliced steak salad (sliced sirloin on a bed of mixed greens, tomatoes, and shoestring onion rings).

Now, in this family I’m the one who gets excited over food. I can still remember what we’ve eaten on every vacation we’ve been on back to when I was three, but Mom cleaned her plate, claiming the salad was the best thing she had ever eaten. It was time for dessert. I picked the Dubrody Kiss (dense chocolate mousse under a chocolate shell and garnished with raspberry sauce) and Mom got an apple strawberry crumble.

The “kiss” was so-so. It was ok, and had I had nothing to compare it to, I would have been completely happy with it. Maybe even really happy. But after I tasted Attila’s crumble, the jig was up. Oh. My. Word. This was heaven. Apples cooked perfectly, strawberries adding texture and flavor contrast. The topping had a perfect crumb with finely chopped almonds mixed in for more complexity, plus warm double cream to pour over each gorgeous spoonful. In short, it is the most wonderful thing ever created on this earth.

After eating entirely too much food at Raglan Road, we headed out to the marketplace, where we were treated to the sight of 20 some odd little children dancing to Justin Bieber and the Jonas Brothers. So Cute! We dashed about for a bit, but Mom was ready for bed, so we ran over to D Street for a Vinylmation trade (I got Dodger from Oliver and Company, who I love) and headed back to our room to sleep. I should probably mention here that our luggage had “magically appeared in our room” just like they promised, so Mom could sleep in peace.

That's the end of day one. Day 2 should be up soon, and the trip only gets more interesting from there.

So hang on to your seats folks, cause there's lots more action to come

Last edited by DerangedChipmunk; 06-08-2011 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 05-20-2011, 08:10 PM   #2
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Table of Contents

Day 1: Arrival and DTD
Day 2, P1: A trip to the future and 'round the world
Day 2, P2: More globe-trotting and a not-a-buckeye
Day 3, P1: The great debate and the great safari
Day 3,P2: Elephants and rhinos and ostriches, oh my!
Day 3, P3: In which I do what I said I never would
Day 4, P1: Happy Tears and Froggy Friends

Last edited by DerangedChipmunk; 06-02-2011 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 05-23-2011, 07:03 PM   #3
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Day 2 P1

On day two, we woke up at six o’clock again (yep, I’m pretty sure we’re crazy) and got ready to face our day. We headed down to the food court and strategized. We had chosen the DDP, which entailed 1 CS meal each, 1 snack each, and 1 TS meal each per day. We knew we would want some CS meals for lunch, but we were really hungry this morning. We decided we would split a CS at the hotel for breakfast (they give you so much food!) and then split another for lunch, with a TS for dinner and snacks in between. We ended up using this strategy all week because it allowed us to eat more food than we needed and try everything we could want.

Today we went for the “bounty platter” which had eggs, sausage, bacon, French toast, and a biscuit. One thing I will say about it is: that French toast just is the business! It was absolutely coated in cinnamon and I couldn’t eat enough of it.

We made it to EPCOT bright and early and got in the queue for rope drop. Once they opened the park, we speed walked over to Soarin’. Mom grabbed to FP for later, and we headed in. I always forget how truly real it feels while you’re in the attraction. It was a perfect beginning to our trip. After Soarin’, while we were waiting for our FP to come up, we went to Test Track. My Mom wasn’t so thrilled with this idea. When it comes to thrill rides (or thrill anything, for that matter) she is the biggest wimp. (but we love her anyway ) But she was still in the “make this trip magical for Em if I die trying” mode, so she went on it.


I have a wonderful Mom.

Wait Time= 0 minutes

After TT, she sent me off on Mission: Space alone (the two rides on TT wore away her do-it-or-die attitude rather more quickly than I would have hoped. Oh bother. Well, it was fun while it lasted)

After riding the Orange Side (with a “team” of senior citizens who took their “jobs” very seriously)

After Mission: Space, our FP time slot was up, and so we went on again. This time, we met a lovely Welsh couple in line that recognized one of the ultimate truths in Disney very quickly:

“Every time you get in a queue, you get round a corner and get excited to go in, only to find that you’re just entering another queue!”

After traversing the multitude of queues, we did Soarin’ again, and decided to head to Living With the Land.

As a side note, there are several things which, though I know they’re harmless, creep me out. You’ll find out about more of them later, but the one that was foremost in my mind at this point in the day was fake rainforests. They give me the heebie-jeebies for no good reason at all. And the trouble was: I’d forgotten Living with the Land had one.

So here I am, riding along in our little boat, enjoying the ride, when suddenly it turns a corner into my worst nightmare. You’ll be proud to know I didn’t scream, make a fuss or anything. I just gripped the seat like there was no tomorrow and told myself that anything that moved was just an animatronic.

They’re all just animatronics.

Just animatronics.

Whew! I survived Living With the Land.(Bet there are very few people who have said that before) As a little reward, we went to one of my favorites… Journey into Imagination with Figment. Man I love that little purple dragon, although I liked the un-reimagined version better.

We love the pop-jets

After Journey into Imagination, we headed to Captain: EO. This was not my first choice. I wasn’t against it, I just didn’t really care about it; but my mom had suffered through TT for me, so I would watch Captain: EO for her. I can honestly say I enjoyed it and would go back if I had the chance. I did find the message a little out of whack though [spoilers ahead!]

It seemed like the take away was “Once you lose everything that made you culturally unique and look and act just like me, then you are beautiful.” 0_o odd. Anyway, ahem, no more misery-guts. Back to the fun!

We headed to the Sunshine Seasons for lunch because I’d heard wonderful things about the strawberry shortcake on the boards. We ordered a rotisserie chicken with baked beans and yellow rice.

The chicken was good, but the breast meat a tad overdone. The sides were pretty good too. The shortcake… grew on me. I’m used to sweetened whipped cream, which the cream on this one wasn’t. But after the initial shock of unsweetened cream, I actually really liked it.

After the Sunshine Seasons, the World Showcase was open and we hit the ground running.

My mom is terrific at planning little surprises while we’re on vacation. This time, I decided I needed to have one for her this trip. Thanks to the DISboards, I’d gotten the phone numbers to the phone booths in the UK (which she’s always gotten her picture taken in every time she goes to Disney) and I’d arranged for a friend of ours to call her and flirt with her in a cockney accent. I told him I’d text him in the afternoon that day.

On our way to the World Showcase, I bought a Vinylmation from a cart by the gateway. Though I wanted to have the experience of trading in WDW, I couldn’t give up Dodger. So I opened the box and found I had purchased…

Drumroll please….



Ok, fine then.

I got Scooter, from The Muppet Show! Not bad. Definitely tradeable, but not bad.

Once we got into the WS, we started with the Three Caballeros. Love this attraction and the ambiance inside of the building. Attila decided she had to have a picture of me with the sign for the attraction, but in the process she blocked other people from getting into the line while she snapped several pictures “just in case”. Hence, the face. (sorry the pictures are so dark, but we are in Mexico at night time, right? )

After Three Caballeros, we headed to Norway for a trip on Maelstrom and thoroughly enjoyed it, along with the movie that comes afterward. Once we finished the ride, a CM stopped us in the gift shop and asked us if we wanted to try “Laila,” a perfume. My mom tried the lotion, and she claims it came out far too fast. Next thing I know, she’s transferring a gob of heavily scented lotion to my hand and trying to figure out what to do with the rest of it. We reeked of Laila for an hour.

As we passed through, we bought a Chinese paddy hat for my brother, and then went on to Germany. I’d read wonderful things about the chewy caramel bars here, though throughout the morning we’d been toying with the idea of getting a caramel apple. The only reason we hadn’t plunked for the apple already was the sticky mess of eating it off of its stick. When we walked in, the CM was slicing a caramel apple into six with a baker’s blade. It seemed like a sign, but then I looked at the case. The apple wasn’t on the Dining Plan! The asking price? $5.45. For a single apple! I ordered a caramel bar, and I was content in doing so; but my wonderful mom was back in her do-it-or-die mode, so she asked the CM for a caramel apple, cut. She smiled at me, and we went out to St. George’s Square with our treasures. In the light of the apple, the caramel bar was tucked into the backpack for later. That was one of the most incredible things I’ve had to eat in a long time.

Our treasure:

Was devoured.

Afterwards, to reward my Mother, we went to see the American Adventure. Now, though I can see why people enjoy this attraction, it’s just not for me. I feel like they try to cram too much into too short a time to do anything justice. So, I’m sorry to say, I kinda dozed through the whole thing.

Last edited by DerangedChipmunk; 05-25-2011 at 10:19 PM.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:20 PM   #4
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Day 2: P2

The next country on the map was Morrocco and I’m happy to report, I got my fez! I was so excited I slapped that puppy right on my head.

My mom was not so pleased, but she was a good sport about it. Unfortunately, the shoes my mother remembered where not the perfect matches I had hoped for, so I’ll have to live another year regretting throwing away my favorite pair ☹.

We made it to France and nibbled on an almond croissant from the patisserie, but I’ve felt like the food has been sliding here in recent years. I’ve tried really hard to love it, but it was just not as good as I remembered. It was also overshadowed completely by that wonderful caramel apple we had had in Germany.

You may remember my little surprise in the UK pavilion? Well, I’d told the friend that we were almost there when we were in America. And it was nearly two hours past the time when I told him to be ready. I knew I couldn’t rush her without letting her know that there was something up. Why oh Why did the imagineers have to put the UK so far away? I was coming apart at the seams trying to casually get her to move it.

As it was during the Flower and Garden Festival, there were topiaries throughout EPCOT, which my mother loved. While we were in France she pointed to one and said, “can we get a picture?” A simple enough request, right? Not really. I thought that she was pointing past the topiary to the absurdly long line for Aurora. We could not stop for Aurora. Not now. Not Now! The UK was in sight! Remember I told you I was coming unglued? This is about where the glue failed catastrophically. “We don’t have TIME for that! We’re gonna be LATE!” I said, pulling her away.

“Late for what?”

She looked at me like I’d gone nuts. I’m sure I looked it. After she explained that she wanted a picture of the topiary, I snapped a quick picture and immediately struck off for England, leaving her to wonder if I’d gone completely mad.

Once we got there I insisted that she get her picture taken in the phone booth. I pretended to take a picture with my phone, but I was really texting our friend that the time was NOW! (finally)

I continued to pretend to take a picture with the phone as long as was even slightly believable. The phone remained silent. Time to switch to the big camera. After pretending to snap a million shots with that, the phone was still silent.

Just as I was about to give up, the phone began to ring.

She answered it and talked for a moment, thanked him, and went to hang up the phone. I stopped her in the nick of time, and she eventually jokingly made a date with him at the Rose and Crown. After she had hung up, she asked me how I had done that. I told her that I had just asked him.

“Asked who?”

I told her the name of her mystery caller and she just about died laughing. She had thought it was a CM who was paid to randomly call the phone booth and flirt with ladies who answered.

And yes. I took the hat off because the closest I’d gotten to being recognized as a Doctor Who fan in my fez was one CM calling me a Morroccan Princess, so really, not close at all.

Now that we’d finished our “world tour,” there was just one thing left on our list of EPCOT must-dos. The great golf ball itself.

We headed over, and it was a walk-on! So we got into our time machine, and traveled along. When the time came for our glimpse into the future, our faces appeared and… there were some issues. The technology they’d used to graft our faces into the future had blacked out two of my teeth and given my mother pigtails. What a lovely future we have to look forward to.

After Spaceship Earth, we hopped on a boat to the Boardwalk for our ADR at the Flying Fish. We were a bit early, but they let us in anyway. I must say, no pictures do the interior of this restaurant justice (especially not my crummy cellphone pictures) but it truly is magnificent. It’s done mostly in brass, with hints of the old boardwalks of America and summer nights.

I chose the potato-wrapped red snapper (although I felt touristy doing so since the menu called it their “specialty”). Mom hemmed and hawed between the scallops with marscapone risotto and the steak with wilted greens. Eventually, because she was still getting over a cold, she went with the steak (less dairy) and I think she regretted it when she saw the scallops being whisked by to the next table. When our meals arrived, they were wonderful. The fish was properly seasoned (not an easy feat) and the steak was a dry-aged beauty.

After dinner, she ordered assorted sorbets and I got a golden apple toffee tart. We each got a pot of tea (English Breakfast for her, Iron Maiden Oolong for me) and felt really refreshed. The tart was delicious, but the garnish confused me. It looked like a buckeye with a fancy leaf thing stuck in the top. I love buckeyes. I ate it. It was not a buckeye. I’m still not sure what it was, but it was most definitely a vegetable and it tasted nasty. Don't think I was supposed to eat that. Whoops!

We went back to EPCOT to catch illumiNations, but took one look at the crowds and the smoke and headed back to the bus instead. It was about now that Mom realized that she had lost her favorite lipstick. She was not happy.

Although the loss was tragic, we managed to get back to the hotel without much weeping and gnashing of teeth. When we arrived, my mother broke out one of those little surprises I told you she’s so good at: a peppermint pedicure set [peppermint foot soak bombs, peppermint foot soak gel, peppermint lotion, and peppermint foot balm] we used everything and nothing has ever felt better! All day I’d been wavering between the thick, “sensible” flip flops with arch support I knew I should be wearing, but that were giving me blisters, and the very un-sensible wedges I’d brought to wear to dinner. Neither was really my best choice, but I promised myself it would be my favorite, ratty, broken in white flip flops for the rest of the week!

We collapsed into bed and dreamed of caramel apples and puzzed and pondered what my not-a-buckeye had been…

Tune in Next time for thrills as we face the Yeti and the attack of the birds!
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:23 PM   #5
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The Dawn of Day 3

We planned to get up early again so that we could be first in line for Kilamanjaro Safaris in AK. That plan… did not come to fruition. I set the alarm for 6:00 p.m. by accident (yes, yes, but I’m blond, what can I say?) and so I awoke to my Mother’s wry grin at 7:00.

“You are really bad at setting Alarms.”

I satisfied myself with glaring at her and forced myself out of the oh-so-comfy Disneybed.

We absolutely flew around the room to get dressed. By 7:35, (record time!) we were speed walking to the bus stop. It was them that Attila realized she’d forgotten her eye makeup. We watched a bus pull up with “Animal Kingdom” Illuminated. I could see the inner battle as she weighed eye makeup and rope drop.

1st Shoulder Angel: The animals are always more active in the morning!

2nd Shoulder Angel: But I’ll be getting pictures taken!

1st Shoulder Angel: The Lines will be terrible if we leave it too long!

2nd Shoulder Angel: My pictures will be terrible if we leave right now!

In the end, the 2nd shoulder angel won and we made a mad dash to the hotel room. She did her eyes as fast as would be acceptable for pictures and we were headed for the bus stop once more.

This was one of the mornings my mother was glad we’d booked Pop Century. Sure, Magic Kingdom was a 20 minute bus ride, but Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios were just a hop, skip, and a jump away.

The first blessing of the day was that, even with my Mom’s unscheduled detour, we made it to rope drop. We hopped in line and a very nice couple jumped in line behind us. He left line to grab a map, and kindly grabbed one for us too.

As we were strategizing, they overheard us talking about doing the safari first, and she declared that they were following us. Turns out, they were AK first timers and really wanted to do the safari, though they didn’t have a clue where to find it.

True to her word, as soon as the turnstiles opened, the four of us rushed back to the safari and grabbed FP for later.

We saw hippos…

He was moving! I felt that this was a momentous occasion.


Nile Crocodiles (if you don’t believe me, you’re in De-Nile! Ha! I should be a Jungle Skipper)

These antelope-type things

A wooly antelope-type thing

A giraffe (that had a crush on our Jeep and followed us for quite a while)

Isn’t he cute?

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Old 05-25-2011, 10:24 PM   #6
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Cute little bitty antelope-type things



The Drama Unfolds: One elephant really wanted the mouthful of leaves in the other one’s mouth. The second one just wanted his buddy to let him chew. Yeesh!

Flamingos. Kind of a let down after the elephants, but… um… yay?

They’re birds! And, well, they’re pink!

Ok, yeah, moving on!

Here comes more fun stuff! A black rhino walked right in front of this truck and got right up next to ours!

See him hiding?


Houston, we have a lion

A bored lion.


And it was at this point that unforeseen circumstances ruined everyone’s fun. (stupid poachers)

After we got off, we talked to the couple we’d led there. They hadn’t figured out how to put their camera in sport mode and they didn’t get any pics. We wrote their address down on an AK map (which I threw out the next day, wondering why we still had an AK map. My bad! If you’re out there, shoot me a PM and I’ll shoot you the pictures, guys!)
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:25 PM   #7
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And at this point, we had reached the end of the plans for today. We were adrift in Animal Kingdom.

We saw a bubble blower (who looks thrilled with his job, c’mon, smile, mister! You’re bringing magic to WDW!)

and ended up going to EE.

After we got off, my Mom wasn’t feeling so hot, but she really wanted to get a good picture for her scrapbook. The way she saw it, the best picture came from the front car, right behind the engine. So she sweetly asked the CM if we could wait for that car. He directed us to a little holding pen in line behind some others. After a short wait, we were ushered to our long awaited seats. The CM couldn't resist an evil grin as we pulled out of the station. We soon found out why. That’s a whole different ride in the front. We got supremely close to both the edge and the Yeti and all the drops seem faster. When we got off, Mom was very motion sick and the picture… wasn’t worth even a second glance.

In the trading post, I traded my Big Baby vinylmation (that I apparently traded Scooter for at some point) for Rowlf.

After this, my Mom was pretty green, and needed to sit down. She informed me that she was going to find us a seat by the water and I could go walk myself to the nearest CS and get her some food “and the biggest Sprite they’d sell me” So I grabbed some ribs at the flametree and a reasonably large sprite for her and started out on what became an epic journey.

A tip for the AK newbie: if you really need a drink, go to Flametree. They waaaaay overfill! I watched as they filled the cups by sticking them under a spigot and waiting for them to overflow. They then neglected to give me lids (for animal safety)

So here I was, hunting for my mother “by the water” with overfull cokes on a tippy tray full of BBQ. I took the right path, and then realized that there are hundreds of thousands (ok, maybe more like six or seven) little alcoves which she could have been in. I ended up going to all of them (some up to three times) with soda spilling all over the ribs, the tray, the ground and me, trying to find her.

Eventually, I got fed up and plunked myself down at the nearest table to whip out my phone. Actual texts:

Me: Where r u?

Mom: By the Lake

Me: Where by the Lake?

Mom: By the Lake in the covered area

Me: There’s a bunch of those! Just scream like a lunatic and I’ll follow the sweet sound of your voice.

Mom: Go to the right [path]

Seeing that this was getting me nowhere, just short of shouting MARCO and waiting to see if I could get a response, I saw the top of her head. In a corner. Behind a trashcan. In the shadows. Thanks for making it so obvious Mom.

So we gobbled down our delicious ribs, beans, coleslaw, and key lime mousse.

Tune in next time for my Mom's attempts at amateur lion taming and the one thing I swore I'd never do on a Disney vacation

Last edited by DerangedChipmunk; 05-25-2011 at 10:58 PM.
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:47 PM   #8
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Very entertaining TR! That was SOO funny when you described your conversation with your mom at AK and glad you found her before nightfall ...in the shadows...by the trash can..

That caramel apple looks delicious! Oh my gosh - I have to get one next trip even if they're not on the DDP.
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Old 05-31-2011, 02:05 PM   #9
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Welcome, heaven2dc! Thanks for joining in!

just a short update for now, with more to come

Jumping right in where we left off, here’s a belated picture of our BBQ…

Mom, however much she enjoyed the barbeque, did not enjoy her company. About halfway through our meal, a duck and three storks came along to beg for scraps. Attila is terrified of anything in feathers. She let out a heart-stopping screech and grabbed the extra chair from the table. Every time they came near, she’d wiggle it at them like a lion tamer.

After our lunch (made more exciting by Mom’s terrified screaming and general flailing about) we went to the Festival of the Lion King. Which I really enjoyed, but I don’t really see what the great fuss is about. The lines (to me) seem over long for the attraction. [shrug]

Our FPs (which I had grabbed before EE) for Kali were up, so we jumped into the queue. We’d been lugging raincoats around all day just for the occasion. We pulled our hair up, put the jackets on, and zipped them up to our nose. We were ready… or so we thought. As we sweated in our waterproof casings and marched our way down the “gangplank” to the rotating stage where we would board our vehicle, we passed the poor drenched souls who were exiting the ride. Several stopped us and told us how brilliant we were, and others looked on in envy. We were very proud of our planning, but very hot in our long sleeve raincoats. Then, we realized all our planning was very silly indeed—the raincoats only came down to our waists. We were seated with a squelch in a dripping wet chair and we were off. The boat twisted so that we encountered the worst of the tidal wave caused by the drop. When we left, we were drenched… from the waist down Because of the shape of my hood, my bangs were also drenched, but none of the rest of my hair. How gorgeous we were!

After shooting the rapids, we wandered over to Dinosoar. Now, I remembered (vaguely) going on this with my cousin the last tie we were here. I also remember it hadn’t been my favorite. But Mom was dead set on the idea that we’d never done it and we should do it for once.

And so we did.

It’s not on the re-do list.

I didn’t care for how jerky the ride was or the fact that (while the dinosaurs weren’t really realistic) I felt like I was in mortal danger the whole time. It did amuse me though, that while we were in line we overheard a little boy expressing his worries about this ride to his parents. His dad assured him in a booming voice

“It’s just like Buzz Lightyear! You’ll love it!”

We saw that little boy getting off. He looked like he was torn between crying, screaming, or punching his father. He ended up just staring ahead of him with the deadest look in his eyes. Poor kid. He had no idea.

We were about done with Animal Kingdom at this point. There was not much else we felt a burning desire to do, with one notable exception.

Funnel Cake. . .

And a duck. The duck decided to take up shop underneath of our bench, flashing his beak out to snatch up any crumbs which dropped, much to my mother’s terror.

She was not pleased about our friend, and sat like this for all of a minute before she informed me we were moving, and as far away from that duck as possible.

We relaxed in Camp Minnie Mickey on the bench across from Huey, Dewie, and Louis to enjoy the rest of our funnel cake.

Mom still wasn’t feeling so well after our adventures on Mount Everest, so we decided to do what I had always promised I would never do. We went back to the hotel to sit by the pool. We made it as far as the hotel room before my mother laid down on the bed and fell asleep. I put my swimsuit on, looked around the hotel room and didn’t see anything else to do. So I took a nap too. At this point, I’d like to apologize for everything I thought about people who “wasted” precious Disney hours taking naps. We both felt worlds better (and even got a little pool time in too).

After our pool time and naps, it was time to head to Italy for dinner. When we arrived, we met the sweetest FP photographer named Louis. He took lots of beautiful pictures, which I’ll post when the CD arrives. With a smile on our faces, we strolled in the faux Italian sunshine to the Tutto Italia restaurant. A smiling Italian CM whisked us into the beautiful, cool interior.

We ended up with veal (served with mashed potatoes and mushrooms) for me and penne Caprese for my Mom. She got a Pinot Grigiot and I got limonata (a sparkling European lemonade)

After the wonderful dinner, we decided to give Spaceship Earth a chance to redeem itself for the way it had treated our pictures. We soared our Spaceship, Earth, through the stars and through time and I was struck by one thing. Gutenberg has skinny legs! I mean really skinny legs! Look next time, you’ll see! The man walks around on a couple of toothpicks!

After remarking on Gutenberg’s diet plan, we decided to head back to the hotel, because we were headed to a place built with a magical plan, where right around the corner was a fantasyland, and we were going to be there for rope drop or die trying!
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Old 06-02-2011, 12:47 PM   #10
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This day held the moment most of you have probably been waiting for, the moment we made it to the most magical place on earth. I know they say that about all of Walt Disney World, but, really, the Magic Kingdom holds the most magic in the most magical place on earth.

When we arrived, I was prepared to run


I mean walk in a perfectly safe manner…

To Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spine to ride it as many times as possible, but I was stopped by two things, both of which I’d forgotten.

The first thing I’d forgotten was “rope drop” implies waiting for said rope to drop. Grrrrr…

The second thing I’d forgotten was that every time I hear the “Welcome Medley” I get all choked up.

I’m not a crier. I just cannot make it through that silly song. It’s beautiful. It’s magical. “It’s all pure magic, wrapped up in pixie dust.” So I sniffled and choked and got it together just in time to walk in those magical gates into the Magic Kingdom. We headed straight for Tommorrowland, where Mom went to get FP for Buzz, and she sent me to do Space Mountain.

The last time I’d been to WDW, I’d been very anti-roller coaster. My cousin had dragged me (pretty much kicking and screaming) onto EE… and subsequently RnRR, ToT and all the others, but SM had been shut for renovation and I’d not gotten to go on. This time, I wanted to go straight off. Bursting with excitement, I got straight into the queue and soon I was in the space module. I soon discovered I had a problem. That problem? I was in a skirt. The space module had a lap bar that went between your legs and you stuck your feet into two dent thingies. I ended up with my feet sideways trying to keep my knees together to keep my skirt down. Word for the wise: do not wear floaty skirts on SM. It’s quite uncomfortable.

Back to the ride. Aside from the fact that I was very uncomfortable positioned, I also felt like I was going to bash my head on a rafter the whole ride. For those of you who couldn’t tell from the pictures: I’m short. Very short. (5’2’’ to be exact), and I felt like I was going to hit my head. I can only imagine what this ride is like for tall people 0_o. I scrunched my spine into an accordion and held on to my skirt and prayed for the ride to be over. Yuck.

Some pictures of my discontent:

After the Space Mountain fiasco, Mom decided she’d make it up to me with a ride on BTMRR, but apparently Frontierland didn’t open until 9:00. Since we were there we rode IASW and then Snow White’s Scary Adventures. After that, it was time for a little fun with the Sword in the Stone.

*sigh* not this trip. Have to work out a little more next time .

After a quick visit with the Fairy Godmother,

we hightailed it towards the now open Frontierland. When we got to Liberty Square Mom started making puppy eyes at me which could mean only that her spidey-senses were tingling. A character was close. As usual (or, always, actually) she was right. We joined the small line to see Tiana and Naveen and waited. These two were wonderful! They asked me where I was from and when I told them Maryland Tiana started scolding me for not bringing her any crab cakes. In the end, we agreed to trade some crab cakes for some beignets next time I came.

These aren’t the best pics, but the photopass CD still hasn't come :P

Aww… Naveen was really fun and sweet and adorable…

No idea what the face is for, but I wasn’t mad at him at any point that I remember…

Much better!

After a visit with the Froggy Folks, we headed towards the HM—one of my favorite rides. I loved the re-vamp of the queueing area

<3 for Master Gracey

This one made me crack up

Finally, we made it to Frontierland. The first thing we did was The Country Bear Jamboree!

We love this attraction, especially Big Al. As we were walking out, the little girl in front of me stopped dead in the aisle, looked up at the trophy heads and yelled


to the deer head. She then turned around to me with a wicked grin

“He’s my favorite!”

and with that, she left the theatre. Ah… children are cute!
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